The New York Times Company seeks to eliminate up to 20 newsroom positions through voluntary buyouts by the end of the year, Brian Stelter reported on the Times media blog. In a staff memo, executive editor Jill Abramson specified that there would be no layoffs.
This is the first major Times newsroom trim since 2009, when the paper cut 100 jobs through buyouts and layoffs. At that time, all employees received buyout packages in the mail; now staff have been alerted to the availability of the buyouts and can request more information.
Times spokeswoman Eileen Murphy attributed the buyouts to an effort to rebalance the news operations and strategically invest in digital operations, but the company is likely adjusting to a changing bottom line. Last month chief executive Janet Robinson announced the company expected an 8% drop in print advertising revenue for the third quarter, as well as a 2-3% dip for digital advertising.
Mr. Stelter also reported that The Times will eliminate vacant positions and offer a limited number of buyouts on the business side, a change the company has not publicly announced yet.
According to his report, only newsroom employees who are covered under the Newspaper Guild print contract are eligible. Digital contract employees are not. Ms. Abramson also reserved the right to deny buyouts in areas where reporting muscle is still needed.